It’s Wednesday, so that means its time for another “Where In The Universe” (WITU) challenge to test your visual knowledge of the cosmos. This one might be relatively easy, but I’m feeling generous today. Guess what this image is, and give yourself extra points if you can guess which spacecraft is responsible for the image. As always, don’t peek below before you make your guess. Comments on how you did are welcome.
This is the Eskimo Nebula (NGC 2392), so named because it resembles a person’s head surrounded by a parka hood. But its also known as the Clownface Nebula. In 2000, the Hubble Space Telescope produced this image. NGC 2392 lies about 3000 light-years away and is visible with a small telescope, found in the constellation of Gemini.
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The gas clouds in this nebula are unusual and complex, and aren’t fully understood. Its a planetary nebula, and the gas seen above composed the outer layers of a Sun-like star only 10,000 years ago. The inner filaments visible above are being ejected by strong wind of particles from the central star. The outer disk contains unusual light-year long orange filaments.
How’d you do?